A Puppy’s Reminder

Izzie and Aussie friend

Last year we said goodbye to our best friend or “family member with fur” as my son says.  At 15, it was just Casey’s time.  Missing Casey, I’ve often thought of the five-year-old child that said dogs are born knowing how to get along with others, love and be kind. That’s why they don’t have to live as long as humans – humans have to learn all those things.

This Christmas my family has a new puppy.  A Boston terrier named Izzie with lots of energy.  The world is a toy at our home.  Puppies always remind us what is in the world two feet above the floor, how to forgive and that the “Best Day Ever” is today!  

After more than 30 years working as a veterinarian, I am convinced we need dogs in our lives.  We often get too wrapped up in the busyness of living. Dogs make you slow down, smile and realize that sometimes being silly is an important part of life.  Blessed with a career that involves puppies everyday, I take my job too seriously sometimes. I love puppies!  Veterinary friends have asked why I am so passionate about puppies.  I give the same answer every time.  Try being sad around eight little puppies –you just can’t do it!  They always make you smile and that has been reason enough to pursue my profession.

The past eight years we have taken prevention and managing the kennel to a whole new level at Revival. Our goal is to quit treating problems that can be managed out of.  It is not only time-and cost-effective, but it also saves puppies’ lives and every puppy deserves a chance at being healthy.  A friend recently told me his Mastiff puppies are all born “mad and fighting for a place in the world.”  That, my friends, has been my goal.  To understand what it took to manage a pregnant mom’s health so she would birth puppies who are born fighting to live. 

I am so thankful for all the kennels and friends who have helped me throughout my career to understand kennel management.  My prayer for the next generation of veterinarians is that they take puppy health to an even higher level.  Health is important when you’re raising America’s next best friend! 

Some days I get so busy I forget to be thankful for the world I have around me.  This holiday season, Izzie is reminding me to do that. My world is a gift, as is this new puppy in our home, and I am thankful for her and the smiles she brings me.  The best day ever is today – that may be the most important lesson a puppy will teach you!   

Thanks for sharing this moment with me.  Merry Christmas to you and your family!  My wish is this Christmas is your “Best Day Ever”!

Your friend,

Dr. B.

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35 thoughts on “A Puppy’s Reminder”

  1. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Thanks so much for the nice “note” about puppies….Agreeing with you 100%, Life with puppies is such a JOY!
    Thank you also for being there for us all!

  2. I am so very sorry for the loss of your sweet fur child and best friend. Godspeed Casey….you are such a GOOD boy!

  3. Dr. B that was a beautiful perspective on dogs/puppies and life. As a long time groomer of 35 plus years, I too can become too serious but one look into the laughing eyes and a tail wagging is enough to brighten a day. Thank you for all your wonderfully, informative articles and being there when a question arises.

    I hope you and yours have a blessed Merry Christmas.

    S Kelley

  4. Beautifully said! Merry Christmas. Our fur babies are our world! Each day is a blessing and we do our best caring for them. Our companions make us smile and forget about the stresses of life. We love our babies ❤️

  5. That is so true and a wonderful story I am a breeder and when I go in my kennel no matter how bad I feel i always end up smiling because THEY MAKE YOU SMILE

  6. We lost Emmy our 15.5 year old Yorkie in August. I know what you mean. When I was hurt, sick of just down, to watch her sit right beside me to snuggle. She knew….
    Thank you for reminding me I need to let another one select me for a friend.

  7. Thank you for this. Sometimes, I get so wrapped up in the day-to-day activities of managing a kennel that I forget to stop and smell the puppy breath.

  8. Thank you for your passion. Your passion for education allows me to raise happier, healthier puppies. Merry Christmas to you Dr. B.

  9. Thank you Dr B for sharing your thoughts and passion! You were my horse’s vet when you were at UGA years ago and I hung on your every word back then as well.
    I too have Boston Terriers – one old girl – a rescue who is very quiet, dignified and thankful and the other (a liver and white) rescue – a wild and crazy girl who never has more than one foot on the ground.
    Your staff has been extremely helpful to me as I have left the horse business to go into the joyful world of breeding and raising Boykin Spaniels. It is an honor and privilege to bring beautiful, healthy pups into this world. Handing them over to their forever homes is one of the most rewarding moments in my life so far. So many thanks to you and all your staff for your knowledge and guidance!!!!

  10. Thank you Dr B. That message was a refreshing reminder I am a dog breeder and have been for almost 50 years. Sometimes the stress of getting the mother dog too and through whelping has been quite challenging and I cry at the loss of every Puppy in My litters that don’t make it. I appreciate the work that you do there and hope that my next litter will come through unscathed with the help of some of your products. Thank you again.

  11. What a neat article.
    We currently have a litter of two week old labs. One is struggling with what I think is pneumonia. I’m treating it with AMX mixed as instructed through you guys and giving him .75cc. Should I do anything else. He’s eating fish just extremely gurgly.
    Thank you!!!
    Rene’ Magnuson

    1. Hello Rene!
      One of our Pet Care Pros will be reaching out to you via phone or email here shortly to help you with your puppy! Let me know if you need anything in the meantime.
      -Maria at Revival

  12. I loved reading this. Really hit home. I slep with my two small breeds and a little puppy last night. What a special time of love and cuddles. I agree you can’t stay sad around a puppy.
    Thanks for the article.

  13. Thank you for this & how oddly timely.
    As I write this, 15-year-old Esther (a little black toy poodle who matured into the “designer coloring” of a Phantom poodle) is doped on Trazadone. When the vet lets me know when he has time to hold my hand, he’ll tell me, we’ll go, he’ll split the shots and … She has severe intractable dementia, diagnosed by me after I realized that she’s acting exactly like my 1st home health patient. The woman would periodically get up for no apparent reason. “Where are you going? What do you need?” — “I need to find My Loved One. Where is My Loved One?”

    Her Loved One was alive & well and either out of the house or in his office. I was hired to give him 3 hours’ respite per day. My respite is in the form of a sedative but thank God animals are empathic, maybe even telepathic.

    I’m not sure she knows “who” Mommy is, but she knows “how Mommy feels.”

    For me, there will be no replacement. I can’t take care of a puppy all alone, but she’s been a darling & let me take photos.

    So thank you again, just for writing this. I posted if on Facebook. Hope that’s OK.

    – Kate … and Essie

  14. Dr. B., I’ve never written to an article author. But I felt a need to thank you for your article ‘A Puppy’s Reminder’. In this last year, I’ve lost 4 of my fur family ( for different reasons…). It’s enough to say they are gone and the gaping hole in my soul just hasn’t started to heal.

    I’m a small home breeder (1-2 litters a year). I am expecting a litter at the end of December. Your article reminded me why I breed dogs. Your right – you just can’t be sad around a litter of squirming happy puppies.

    While I’ve searched for something to fill my loss, I’ve forgotten about the impending puppy arrival. I’ve been so intent on grief that I’ve only gone through the motions to prepare for my next litter. I’ve been so sad that I’ve contemplated giving up breeding altogether.

    I’ve not had a “this is the best day ever” day in so long because my grief wouldn’t allow me to see what’s right under my nose. I have 4 fur family members and 3 fosters. How could I ignore what they were trying to remind me of? It’s as if I just woke up while I read your article.

    I am remembering what family, celebration (Thanksgiving & Christmas) and gratitude are all about. I have much to be grateful for. I have much to look forward to. You see, I’ve always believed that dogs are angels that were sent to help us poor, often mis-guided souls. Looking through a dogs guide, life can be so much simpler and today can be the ‘best day ever’.

    I appreciate the reminder your article provided to me.

    With Sincere Appreciation and

  15. Thank you Dr. B for a wonderful story of why dogs are so important in our lives! After saying good-bye to one of mine this past summer (she was featured in Maria’s blog a few months back) it made me realize just how much a part of the family they are! And thank you for making Revival a wonderful [place to do business! Merry Christmas!

  16. I too love puppies. I have loved & lost so many of my fur babies over the last 3 years. But i now have two new puppies out of a friends litter i whelped. They are the brightest spots in my day. Thank God for puppies. I loved your story.
    God bless & keep taking care of puppies as long as you can.

  17. I too love puppies. I have loved & lost so many of my fur babies over the last 3 years. But i now have two new puppies out of a friends litter i whelped. They are the brightest spots in my day. Thank God for puppies. I loved your story.
    God bless & keep taking care of puppies as long as you can. Merry Christmas & Happy New year.

  18. I love dogs, but I am a cat person now; I don’t have the physical stamina any more to keep up with a dog. 🙁

    Happy Holidays!

  19. Happy Holidays Dr. B! I am grateful for all the help you and Lori Petterson have been through the years. From teaching healthy kennel protocol to treating individual pets your advice has been invaluable. Thank you for all you do to keep our fur family healthy.

  20. Beautifuly said! Most of us do forget to be thankful for the world and the another day we received to live! Thank you for a great article! Merry Christmas and happy New Year!

  21. I know what it is like to lose a loving friend like my Biewer only three when he pass on hes missed every day but i have other to love and remember Fritz will always be in my heart .

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